I will shortly be posting the first of ten interviews that I am conducting with straight women and men who are (or were) married to gay men and women. Before I do, I wanted to mention a few things:

  • Some of these straight spouses are used to the bickering of the blogosphere, but others are not. I imagine some of them will be following comment threads and may even respond to additional questions you might have, so above all please be respectful and considerate.
  • The plural of anecdote is not data. I’m not out to prove anything with these interviews, and I hope you won’t attempt to either. These women and men are being kind enough to share their stories and their thoughts with us because their perspectives might shed light on a complex issue (or because I asked them to and/or blackmailed them into it), not because they want to prove that ALL mixed-orientation marriages are superfabulous or that ALL mixed-orientation marriages are doomed to fail. I hope you’ll take these interviews as an opportunity to understand a fellow human being who is in a situation that is likely different from your own.
  • I don’t pretend to be an unbiased interviewer–I am, after all, married to one of my interviewees. I do, however, try to let the biases of the interviewee flavor the interview more than my own. I’m not actively LDS, for example, but all of my interviewees are, so I’ve tried to base any assumptions behind my questions in their beliefs, not mine. Because everything else in the world may be all about me, but these interviews are not.
  • If you think this foreword is long, wait’ll you see the interviews. I’ve been quite pleased to see how much these straight spouses have to say. I’m posting the interviews in their entirety because I want to let these women and men speak for themselves. I think that what they have to say is worth the time to sit down and read, but I’ll post a collection of highlights after all ten interviews are completed, to be sure those of you who skim don’t miss the best parts.

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  1. avatar

    The plural of anecdote is not data.


    I think the voices of the spouses need to be heard. There are also a number of websites where straight spouses tell their stories.

  2. avatar

    sheila burnett

    I’m the “straight former spouse” of a gay mormon dentist. I am now happily remarried for 10 years to a straight mormon ObGYN.

    I am 42, and was the typical “trophy wife” (blonde, gorgeous, size 3, smart, right family etc.) when I married Spence. (the gay dentist)

    I was naive, and very wide-eyed, yet well-educated from NY. I was a journalist etc. There are many, many MANY women like me who found themselves (I dated spence for 5 months, married in the temple, no clue as to his homosexuality till after)
    in the bizzaro marriage uphill battle as an LDS gal married to a gay mormon dude.

    I will always love spence like a brother and a good friend. I forgive him and do not regret my experience with him. They made me more compassionate, an activist for gay mormon men and women in the Church (not to change the Church, just to get all members to love one another despite ANY gender attractions, addictions, etc.) and overall I feel I am a better human being having married Spence. At the time it seemed like sheer H-e double hockey sticks.. and I was so sad I used to hope Father in Heaven would call me home with some fatal illness! However, I was seminary teacher, love the temple etc. and kept active and busy with my Church callings. What was difficult is Spence not opening up and telling me he was gay or SSA or SGA etc. I had to read a clandestine letter he wrote to his former undergrad school byu to find that one out. It was a shocker! But then again…not…

    You see, without sounding to arrogant~ I knew the affect I had on men previously: namely always getting the cream of the crop (hence my sexy, harrison ford looking the-real-dr-mcdreamy obgyn I’m married to now) and I was used to men wanting me, for lack of a better term. Spence on the other hand, felt like my brother and our sex life was very uncomfortable for both of us.

    I tried to find out what was wrong, but always got the brush off. Spence was a handsome man, 6″2, 31 (I was in my 20’s at the time) never married or engaged successful dentist from lakeland Florida. I was a successful newscaster for radio in orlando. we were the consumate cutie couple, grossing everyone out with our make out sessions at singles activities! Unfortunately, this was back in the day when people like us, spence and I couldn’t talk to anyone about our “perculiar” problems as a married couple. I felt embarrassed and he ashamed. I am happy there are other resources today for women and men like spence and I.. the Gospel and the Lord are what saw us both through the ordeal, and he is now happily remarried and active to a beautiful women with three children in the Church, not totally straight, but alot more honest! I am happily married to the most paitient, loving man in the universe, who is now for me so I need to go. God bless all of you,my sincere prayers are with both those suffering with SGA and their loved ones.. You are not alone!!! there are many of us out there…just hang in there, and most of all stay strong in the Gospel and close to the Lord Jesus Christ.. Love always, Kittywaymo

  3. avatar


    This was a little tough, but a lot of fun, as I stated in the interview. It is a little weird to have our story just “out there” now as it is! But I really do hope that this can help people, both the “strugglers” and the spouses.

  4. avatar


    Thanks for sharing your story, Kittywaymo. I’m glad to have it here along with the others that will be coming.